Reason #9: Fostering is an excellent way to learn more about dogs and cats. Most people who have a cat or dog know something about the species and how to care for them. For example, after a year of raising Beatrice, our spectacularly attentive, sensitive, and hyperactive pit bull, we knew a good bit about training and caring for a dog. Sort of. We sought out help from a fantastic professional trainer, and did a lot of reading. But we mostly just knew a lot about our dog.
As we began to foster other dogs we realized just how much we didn’t know. Every animal we have cared for has taught us something new. Fostering pups taught us a lot about assessing temperament. Scarlett the pit bull taught us about dog hierarchy and how packs work. Fostering Kitty Feathers taught us about kitty midwifery—and that the emergency vet is really expensive. They have all taught us patience. If you are willing to learn from the critters who come into your life, fostering dogs and cats can help you build expertise as an animal caretaker.
Pictured: Frances (mewing), Pirate (aka Pascal), and beloved alley-mom Kitty Feathers.